The Call of Duty World League has announced its plans for the upcoming CWL season, which will obviously star Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. The upcoming season will have a completely new format with five vs five team play (previous seasons including the 2018 CWL Pro League were four vs four), a new CWL Pro League format, a dedicated amateur circuit with its own prizing, and the largest overall prize purse in the league’s history weighing in at a cool $6 million USD.The new Call of Duty World League season will kick off right after Black Ops 4‘s release on October, 12th with its first high-profile LAN competition scheduled for December 7th-9th in Las Vegas, NV.
The Open Bracket versus Pool Bracket system for CWL Las Vegas will work out as follows:
Much like last year’s city-based events, CWL Las Vegas will be a multi-stage competition featuring an Open Bracket, Pool Play, and a Championship Bracket.
Any team who purchases a team pass will be able to compete in the Open Bracket. As for Pool Play teams, initial qualification will be based on the following:
The first 12 Pool Play spots will be grandfathered in based on the top-12 teams from CWL Pro League Stage 2:
- Roster restrictions apply: Stage 2 teams must retain three of four players from their roster to qualify
- Any top-12 team that does not retain the majority of its roster will be replaced by teams with the highest amount of combined CWL Pro Points from the 2018 season.
The final four Pool Play teams will be determined via a relegation style play-in, broadcast-only tournament in Las Vegas on December 6:
- The top-eight teams with the highest amount of combined CWL Pro Points from the 2018 season will qualify into this tournament
- The top-four teams in this tournament will join the 12 teams in Pool Play, while the four losing teams will be seeded in the Open Bracket
- Pool Play and Open Bracket seeded by CWL Pro Points from the 2018 season
“With Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, the Call of Duty World League is poised to have its most exciting and biggest season yet. Beginning in Las Vegas and continuing throughout 2019, CWL fans can expect the best players from around the world to battle even harder to be crowned Call of Duty World League Champion,” said Executive Vice President and General Manager of Call of Duty, Rob Kostich. “This season brings a ton of new storylines, including the move to five vs. five in CWL. We’re excited for this opportunity and we’re supporting it with the largest prizing in our history of $6 million. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is tailor-made for intense competition at all levels – pro and amateur – and with this move we’re ensuring that the game you play, is the game you see this season with the CWL.”
The CWL Pro League competition will take place in one single season across twelve weeks starting in February of 2019. For the first time, cross-divisional matches will be held in a new rivalries format, with the season as a whole culminating in the CWL Championship tournament in August of 2019.
The 2019 Pro League season changes as laid out by the CWL:
The CWL Pro League is back with bigger teams, inter-divisional play, and no region restrictions.
Qualification will also be different. Not only will the CWL Las Vegas event offer a prize pool, every team will set their sights on a top 32 finish to have their chance to qualify for the CWL Pro League. The top four teams from CWL Las Vegas will automatically qualify for the CWL Pro League. Teams placing 5th – 32nd will fight for the remaining 12 CWL Pro League spots, at a qualification event that will take place in January at the MLG Arena in Columbus, Ohio.
The 16 Pro League teams will be split up into two divisions, but there will no longer be a relegation period nor two separate stages. This year, there will only be one stage with 12-weeks of play, including inter-divisional play. Furthermore, teams will be rewarded a prize bonus, in addition to base prizing for being in the CWL Pro League, for each match win throughout the season, meaning that every series, every game, and every play will have even more on the line than just a place in the CWL Pro League Playoffs.
As for non-pros, the new dedicated amateur circuit matches coming to the CWL LAN events in 2019 will offer teams several new opportunities including an amateur payoff race.
Finally, the CWL aso released plans for updates to the CWL National Qualifiers for teams in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, France and Belgium, Italy, Germany and Netherlands, Spain and Portugal, UK and Ireland, and the US. The basics of the National Qualifiers changes are simple enough:
In each CWL National Qualifier, 16 teams will compete in an online tournament to win travel and accommodation to compete at a future CWL LAN event.
CWL National Qualifiers will take place in the original National Circuit locations: Australia and New Zealand, Canada, France and Belgium, Italy, Germany and Netherlands, Spain and Portugal, United Kingdom and Ireland, United States. Each Qualifier will be country and region-locked, requiring players being from respective countries and regions to compete.
You can check out the full announcement at the official Call of Duty esports website here.